The National Oil Spill Committee of the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) convened an emergency meeting on, Tuesday, May 28, 2019 to review an investigation of illegal disposal of oil sludge at the WASCO Treatment Plant at Beausejour.
An investigation was conducted on Monday, May 27th, 2019 by the Environmental Health Division as a result of the oil spill. The investigation discovered that there was an overflow of oil towards the bottom of one of WASCO’s sludge pits facing the Darren Sammy Cricket Grounds and a significant quantity of oil which appeared to have emanated from WASCO’s Sewage Treatment Plant. Vegetation in that area facing the stadium was covered with black oil and oil seepage was present in the area near the ravine next to the cricket grounds. A large fish kill was also observed in the ravine as a result of the oil spill.
WASCO is currently working with NEMO for immediate remedial measures to the area and continues to work to ensure that there are no long term effects to the surrounding areas. To ensure this, the Company has agreed to immediately submit to NEMO a plan of action for clean-up procedures by its Contractor. A monitoring team of NEMO has also been set up to review the clean-up procedures and to ensure that the area is brought back as much as possible, to pre-spill conditions.
The Company has informed that measures will be taken to ensure that such an event does not re-occur.
NEMO implores the users of the Plant to be conscious of actions that can have negative effects on the environment. Disposal of garbage, oil sludge and the like are not permitted and companies who need guidance on such disposal, are advised to seek the assistance of the Solid Waste Management Authority and the Environmental Health Division.